Yikes, The Holidays are Coming!

 

Christmas Stress small

It’s November, and it is not unusual to feel, “Yikes, the Holidays are Coming! If you’re feeling this, you’re normal. Me too!

It makes so much sense to be nervous. While the Holidays are wonderful, full of promise and hope for many, they also carry extra work, pressure, expectations, and even mixed feelings.

It is helpful to have a plan to take care of yourself as you head into the Holidays.

First, talk to yourself with compassion about this. Maybe say something like this…”It’s normal for me to feel nervous and stressed as the holidays approach. While there is so much I look forward to, there is also a lot of extra work that needs to be done to make it all happen. I also have some mixed feelings because of some difficult holidays in the past. I think I’ll be a good friend to myself this season.”

Second, make sure taking care of yourself is part of your plan as the Holidays approach. Try getting enough sleep (even if you have a lot to do), eat as healthy as you can (when not at a Holiday party), take time to move your body (a daily walk), and remove some things from your plate that can wait until January…Ok, or February.

Thanksgiving smallThird, think about what is really important to you as you approach Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. Take the time to ponder and think ahead so that some of the things that are important to you are part of what is planned this holiday season…not just creating good experiences for others.

What is important to you? Imagine this…it’s January 5th and you look back on your Holidays and say, ”Wow, I’m pretty happy with how things went. I’m so glad that this, this, and this happened.” Ask yourself: ”What are those things, those moments, those traditions that are meaningful to you to include?” Plan now to make time for what you thought of.

What you decide matters, but what is most important is that you consider and make room for yourself in your Holiday plans, along with making meaningful memories for those in your life.

Don’t fall into the trap of expecting others to know what you want, without sharing your wishes…and then become resentful when you feel your needs weren’t included. Listen to your heart, and include yourself in your Holidays.

Heart in hands - smallListen to your heart…as you think about Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Years. Following are some questions for your heart to respond to. Please do not use it as a list of things to do. Choose well…

~ What type of time do you want to have with family, friends, and co-workers?

~ What type of alone time or rest would you like for yourself? What will you do with this time?

~ Are there any events you want to make sure and be part of?

~ What type of Spiritual Moments or Traditions do you want to make happen?

~ How would you like to thank and honor God as you move into the Holidays and the New Year?

~ Would you like to give and serve others during the Holidays?

~ Are there any special foods or traditions that are meaningful to you that you want to incorporate?

~ Do you want to cook over the Holidays, or order out? How busy do you want to be with all this?

~ What type of decorating (inside/out) are meaningful to you?

~ What expectations or activities can you let go of this Season?

~ Do you have music, theater, or art traditions that are meaningful to you?

~ Who could you ask for help, or share help with to pursue things of meaning?

~ Who would you like to thank or let know how important they are to you?

~ What is the most important thing you can do for yourself as you head into the Holidays?

OK…here are a few things on my list…

~ Watching my favorite Christmas Movies (White Christmas, Elf, Muppet Christmas Carol) and yes…some of the Hallmark Christmas Movies 🙂

~ Planning meals as easy as possible, including ordering out and asking others to help

~ Spending meaningful moments of connection and praise with Our Lord

~ Being kind and compassionate with myself regarding what I can and cannot do

How about You?

~ What jumped out to you from this post?

~ What is your heart saying to include as well as let go of this Holiday season?

~ How can you be your own good friend as you head into the Holidays?

I hope this post was helpful, and will help change, “Yikes, The Holidays are Coming!”, to, “I’m going to listen to my heart and include myself in the Holidays this year” 🙂 I was blessed to be featured by Jodie Stevens on Fish Family Solutions this morning (every Wednesday at 8:40AM on 103.9 the Fish). This new segment features local marriage and family therapists sharing proven solutions to everyday problems to help you live a successful life. You can listen on your radio or online at 1039thefish.com.”

Click below to listed to this 3 minute interview

 

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